Central Bank of Iraq blacklists money transfer company for terrorist ties
By Khalid al-Taie
The Central Bank of Iraq on Monday (June 19th) confirmed it has blacklisted an Anbar-based money transfer company for its involvement in funneling funds to the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) and al-Qaeda.
"The bank [on Sunday] placed al-Kawthar Money Transfer, which is based in al-Qaim in Anbar province, on the blacklist," Central Bank spokesman Yosr Jabbar told Diyaruna.
"The company, which is owned by Omar Mohammed Rahim al-Kubaysi, is involved in financing and supporting terrorist groups," he said.
The bank has imposed strict measures to block any financial or banking transactions that threaten national security, he added.
"When we are advised by our control and financial departments about such transactions, we immediately ban the company concerned, stop all direct and indirect dealings with it and freeze its assets," he explained.
Blocking terror funding
"There is a special office in the bank concerned with combating money laundering," Jabbar said. "It is administratively independent, according to Iraqi Law for Combating Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing No. 39 of 2015."
One of its top priorities is to combat all financial activities related to funding terrorism, he said, adding that it has helped "block ISIS financial dealings and protect the country's financial system against exploitation by terrorist groups".
"Since the beginning of last year until now, we have blacklisted about 100 money transfer companies and bankers," he said.
These companies were headquartered in Mosul, Kirkuk and Baghdad, he said.
"Iraq complies with all the standards and decisions of the US Department of Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control for combating terrorist financing," Jabbar said.
"Our efforts in observing and implementing these obligations have been praised by the international financial system, and Iraq has now become an effective member in that system," he said.